The Best Dealers
The best dealers or croupiers are those who co-operate, and you can make them co-operate by generous and correct toking or tipping as we all know it. Here's an example. I was playing a single-deck game against a woman dealer who was telling me about her two kids. She had been divorced in the East, and come out to Vegas to visit a woman friend, and decided to become a dealer and start a new life. In Philadelphia, she told me, at best she'd have become a secretary at one-third the money she was making now.
It is a common story in Vegas where people are looking for a fresh start, a new career, better weather, better schools and basically a better life. She asked me if I was a local, I told her I had been living in Vegas for six months, that I was writing a book. Did I write novels? I told her I did, and wrote down my name on a piece of payer with a list of my books. And we continued playing.
It was a single deck game and she dealt down about two-thirds, which was good. This is called penetration. A friend of mine suggested that gambling was much like life, the deeper the penetration, the better the situation. Well, take it any way you will. I didn't tell the dealer this, of course.
As the deck moved along on one round, it got more and more favorable for me. The count was something like +7 which means a lot of high value cards and aces are left in the deck. A very juicy situation to make bigger bets. I wanted the dealer to penetrate more deeply in the deck than what she had been doing. So I made a bigger bet and a big tip, putting the tip right in the betting box where I could leave it for still another round. "Let's win this together, I said to her. I have a feeling about the next hand."
She hesitated. She would normally shuffle up here, but taking my suggestion, she dealt me another hand, a blackjack. Beautiful. Her $10 tip became $25.
"One more time," I said to her. Again she hesitated, but then in the end, dealt me another hand. I had two 10s. She showed a 7 as her upcard and stood on hard 17. Now there was $50 in tokes for her. All from the original $10 toke.
"Thanks," I said. "Here you are." I pushed the toke towards her. She smiled and thanked me, and was relieved about fifteen minutes later. But from that moment till she left the table, she shuffled up if I didn't put down a toke, and kept dealing if the toke was in the box. I didn't have to say anything; she knew what was going on.